Best neighborhood ever! Logan Square

June 23, 2011

I really hadn’t planned on it.  I’d covered the Chicago Reader’s “Best of” issues for the past three years.  I thought I was through with it, at least for the time being.  I didn’t encourage readers to vote in this year’s Chicago Reader’s “Best of Chicago 2011” polls.

But, dammit! “Best Overall Neighborhood” merits a blog post.

Best Overall Neighborhood – Logan Square

But not just Best Overall Neighborhood; how about:

Best Neighborhood for Affordability – Logan Square

(runner-up) Best Neighborhood for Culture – Logan Square

(runner-up) Best Neighborhood for Diversity – Logan Square

(runner-up) Best Neighborhood for Nightlife – Logan Square.

After having to work to find last year’s Logan Square gems (see “Best of” closest to the square), this year’s edition was chock full of Logan Square, which, like the whole of Chicago, does its share of “world-class dining scene,”  “grassroots arts movement,” and “one beautiful mess of highbrow and low.”  It’s almost all Logan Square, all the time this year, so I’ve not distinguished the Reader’s picks from the Reader’s readers’ picks.  [Update:  How did I Read the rest of this entry »

Logan Square is for lovers

September 18, 2010

That according to Steve Dolinsky, otherwise known as the Hungry Hound.

On his blog he picks the Top 5 restaurants for a first date in Chicago, and two of them are right here in Logan Square:  Lula Café and Longman & Eagle, both of which have received national attention this year. 

Dolinsky’s criteria:  “just focus on the food, and the atmosphere will usually take care of itself.”  Not being a foodie, ambience is key for me.  But these places have atmosphere in spades,…and buzz, which contributes to the lively ambience.

The buzz at Lula (photo left), of course, has always been the food, and Dolinsky recommends a shared dessert to ice the date cake.  But they’ve also featured interesting art on the walls, an attractive outdoor seating area, and I was particularly fond of their expansion of a few years back when it was more of a lounge (though I absolutely understand why it became another dining area).  Did you know they are expanding even further?  We’ll have to see what that iteration brings. Read the rest of this entry »

World National domination continues

August 27, 2010

First it was Longman & Eagle, and now it’s Lula Café in the national spotlight, recognized by Travel + Leisure magazine as one of the top 10 places for “America’s Best Pancakes.”

Travel + Leisure searched from east coast to west coast, but only “this hip Windy City café” passed muster in the Midwest.

I don’t mean to rush summer along, but, mmmm, some pumpkin pancakes sound really good right now.

Where’s the best budget movie theater in the city?

August 11, 2010

Answer:  Logan Square. 

But we knew that already, right?  Nonetheless, it’s good to have neighborhood institutions receive the recognition.

Logan Theater

In its “Best of Chicago 2010: Arts, Culture, and Entertainment,” Chicago Magazine named the Logan Theater at 2646 N. Milwaukee Avenue as the best budget movie theater in the city, regognizing it as “a rare breed” and giving a nod to the “gentlemanly men in suits that work there.”

Logan Theater on Milwaukee Ave.

Down the street, Cole’s was also recognized for the best open mic night, and recognized as “a Logan Square bar with a positive attitude,” and this time giving a nod to owner Coleman Brice, “who remembers names and drink orders.”

“Best of” closest to the square

July 14, 2010

A day after my last post the Chicago Reader came out with its “Best of Chicago 2010” issue.  The accidental theme of the issue is “street smarts.”  Though, am I lacking them because I found it a bit cumbersome to find the Logan Square gems in this, the third annual, issue?  No fears; they are there.

“Best of” in Logan Square

In 2008, the “Best of” in Logan Square  was a fairly traditional list of categories while 2009’s “Best of” in Logan Square was a bit quirkier.  And this year’s is a mixture of both. 

I want to highlight those that are relevant to this blog’s geographic focus:

Lula Café resurfaces, chosen in the readers’ poll in the more traditional category of Best Brunch of 2010.

Lula Café on Kedzie Boulevard
in Logan Square

Read the rest of this entry »

Next we conquer the world!

June 9, 2010

In the category of “The Bar With Very Good Food”  (because “strong drink demands food”), Esquire magazine has named Longman & Eagle one of “The Best Bars in America 2010.” 

Not just best in Chicago, mind you, but one of the best places to drink in these United States.  Kudos!

In addition to the very Read the rest of this entry »

Mo’ best Logan Square

November 13, 2009

Logan Square represents in another “Best of Chicago 2009”

Earlier this year, Logan Square shone in some quirky classifications in the Chicago Reader’s “Best of Chicago 2009” (see “Best of” in Logan Square), and now additional kudos! are due to some Logan Square notables recognized in some even quirkier categories in Newcity’s “Best of Chicago 2009.”

Like the quite specific “Best breakfast alternative to the wait at Cozy Corner” (on Milwaukee Avenue) accorded to the lesser known Cozy Corner at 4356 W. Diversey Avenue.

Same homestyle breakfast, same reasonable prices, but a bigger space and, best of all, no wait.

4356 Diversey Cozy CornerCozy Corner Restaurant in Logan Square

And [Correction:  Reader/commenter Jason points out that the alternative Cozy Corner is not in Logan Square, but in Hermosa.] the “Best use of Read the rest of this entry »